Reality Rating: 5/5
Fidget Factor: 0.4
When big names grace the stage, I always hold a suspicion I’m going to be disappointed by the production, that the hype is due to fandom rather than truth. I had no need to be concerned for The Dazzle, which turned out to be an absolutely spectacular production.
When entering the space in newly formed location, Found 111, I found myself the most handsome and comfortable chair amongst the mix, in the middle section of the audience. I would argue, even after only seeing it once, this is the section to be in. If you want to enjoy this production as much as I did, take enough layers to survive an Ice Age; although I resented my coat for rustling time to time – it was preferable to the clatter of chattering teeth.
I can’t remember a script that has had me so gripped, with complete satisfaction, as The Dazzle; Richard Greenberg’s elegant, playful and melodious use of words make for an enthralling performance. There is a danger the characters could be perceived as pretentious due to the extent of their eccentric behaviour, but Simon Evan’s phenomenal direction and the exquisite delivery from this trio of actors ensured for a compelling and positively enjoyable performance.
The Collyer brother’s biggest fear for one another is becoming ‘ordinary’, living as others do. Langley Collyer, an artist consumed by himself, of fractious mind, tends to obsess over objects he can claim and master, indulging himself by giving them ‘true’ names; an extension of Langley’s self-importance. Most interesting of all to me was Homer’s story, Langely’s brother. Begrudging yet selfless, Homer is told from a young age he exists purely for the support of his elder, talented, special brother; a demand he tries to defy but is drawn back through guilt to his brothers, ever needing, side. The introduction of Milly Ashmore to the gents home is catastrophic to the equilibrium the brothers have been living.
Andrew Scott is magnetic in his performance of Langley, David Dawson brings an abundance of humour and sensitivity to the character of Homer and Joanna Vanderham, above being brave for undressing in the antarctic conditions of the space – holds her own, with a dynamic portrayal of the young Miss Milly.
Pacey, provocative and stimulating in every part, this production of Dazzle is beyond entertaining – a must see for 2016. Unfortunately this performance is sold out, however 5 day tickets go on sale for just £10 each performance – certainly worth the wait.
Time: 2 Hours 20 Minutes including 15 min interval.
Running: 10 DEC 15 ►30 JAN 2016
▦ Photos – Marc Brenner
♥ Thanks to Ottilie Kark for the invite and drinks to follow!